My prayer and plea for you as you start this new semester is that you choose to humble yourselves in all your endeavors. By focusing on Jesus Christ, we invite his spirit into our lives. Through that spirit, Christ changes us. What is your dock? You’re mooring your anchor. It is your relationship with the savior Jesus Christ. I’m old enough to bear witness of a God who thinks peace regarding us and not evil. What we need, all of us together, you and I, from those solidly in the church as well as those struggling to hold on. What we need in every case is still the same powerful faith. I hope you will seek holiness, seek learning, seek revelation, seek the best gifts, seek Christlike mentors, and above all, seek this Jesus Christ of whom the prophets and apostles have written.
What Christ knew is that despite the tumult we feel around us, god will prevail in the end.
There is no better way to understand both the strengths and the vulnerabilities of the United States of American culture than to live for an extended time someplace else.
I invite you to make a difference in the world by being true peacemakers, for these will be called the children of God.
To be a good neighbor is to wonder how your words and actions will impact others, rather than worrying about how you will be impacted.
I testify that if you will pause and think about the things you really want to achieve in the future, and then begin doing the things that are consistent with that desire every day, you will achieve that desired result. I know our Heavenly Father’s love for you is real and unending. It is most powerfully manifest through the grace of His Son Jesus Christ. The American dream is a promise of freedom and hope, but it is also a call on all of us to make true the myths that we tell ourselves about what America has always been. As you and I act in faith, god promises us to truly endow us with his power. I urge you to take full advantage of propinquity that you spend more in person time coming to know your family, your friends and your perceived antagonist, and especially the Savior. We are never trudging the sidewalk alone. Though God will send angels, and also God will send us. From now on, wherever you go and whatever you do, you will be representing BYU. I invite you to focus on that which is within your control to center your faith and your life on Jesus Christ in his restored gospel and as needed from time to time to recenter your life on Him.
When we look with hope and love to Christ, we will be given compensating blessings that will bind us to Him in powerful ways. Even if our challenge remains. The opportunity and promise of a higher education at BYU not only includes the highest quality instruction and meaningful research, it also includes the direct influence of heaven. There can and should be bi directional connections between my scholarship and faith. And this is at the core of the aims of a BYU education. By following the directions which simple ideas lead and simple discoveries lead, one can be swept off into all sorts of adventures. Believing on their words is like borrowing a flame to light a spiritual fire. By focusing on the three suggestions I’ve mentioned preparation, People and Praise, our faith in the Lord will increase, and in turn, our faith in ourselves will increase as well. I challenge all of you to think about what powers you need to cultivate that will help you right now into tomorrow and forever. Your path of discipleship involves embracing your imperfect story and sharing who you are in a way that meets the world’s great needs. The boat we take on life’s journey matters, since it will largely determine how we experience the storms.
My purpose today is to encourage us all to say something, know something more about mental health in order that we all might be something more and obtain optimal mental health. We have unlimited access to wisdom, truth and blessings from our scriptures, our ordinances, and our covenants. Perhaps we should add at least a daily dose of wonder to our spiritual practices in the doctrines of the church. Faith and the quest for knowledge are not inconsistent. They are compatible and complementary. At the end of the day, students are the product we produce. How they turn out, what they do, and more importantly, who they are is the ultimate metric by which our work will be measured. I’ve been impressed by the simple one sentence statement of the aims of a BYU education. As you’re aware, it reads a BYU education should be spiritually strengthening, intellectually enlarging and character building, leading to lifelong learning and service. I know this university has a prophetically declared mission to become uniquely great. The process of taking charge of our own testimonies can be demanding and exacting, but through the process, we become more refined. We get to decide. We get to choose the most important thing in our existence our eternal destiny.
More important than what you do as a student are the choices you’re making in your personal life. The priorities you are adopting consciously or subconsciously, here and there. If we watch for them flickering, assurances of God’s love for us become evident. Whether it is a no problem day or we are in the midst of an intensive period of testing and trial in our lives, we can find strength in the Lord Jesus Christ. We are all living in a deliverance story, and the Lord our God is the great deliverer. I hope you will allow your mind to conceive and believe that Heavenly Father sent His Son to give us hope and help in finding a more abundant life. By exploring nature’s curiosity cabinet, we can not only increase our own sense of wonder, but also discover truths going to help some of the world’s most serious problems. Receiving the gifts of God as a catalyst for change a change of heart, a change of countenance, a change of desires, a new birth. This is the love God is calling us into. We are deeply relational beings designed for love and connection with God and with one another as we come unto Christ, he follows a pattern of instruction.
He teaches eternal truths, extends invitations to act and promised blessings to those who act in faith to fulfill his imitation. Caring about God’s creation, which includes people and other living things already being affected by climate change today. It is a genuine expression of our faith, it is a faithful acceptance of our responsibility and it is a true expression of God’s love. As we embrace the light and truth of the Savior, we’ll be able to follow his footsteps and listen for the sound of his sandalled feet and learn how to walk with Him.